A Teesside film organisation has donated a sum of money to Darlington’s Dogs Trust to give back to the community.

Tees Valley International Film Festival (TVIFF) have donated £1,000 to the charity, and have pledged to support organisations around the Tees Valley region each year.

Michael Luke, director of TVIFF, said the festival wished to do some good beyond the creative industry, and decided on the Dogs Trust to recognise their tireless work and the joy their dogs bring to those across the world.

He said 50 per cent of the money raised by the festival has been donated to the charity, while the other half went to the ARC venue.

The Northern Echo:

Mr Luke said: “That was really important. That all of the money stayed within the region, and that all of the money benefitted the people, and the region, and the animals, that we’re trying to help.

“We really admire the work the Dogs Trust do and the donation wasn’t just in recognition of the tireless work that they do for those lovely animals, but also of the joy that dogs bring to individuals and families across the region, across the world.

“The happiness that they bring as a result of the Dogs Trust bringing those animals back to health and the joy it brings from there was something that we very much wanted to reward and recognise.

“The entire ethos of the festival is about giving back to the region, creating a ‘creative revolution’ within the Tees Valley, and as an extension of that, the fact that we will be able to donate money to charities and institutions outside of the creative industry is an even bigger bonus.

“Everything is about promoting the region, benefitting individuals, and trying to kickstart a creative revolution in the Tees Valley.”

He attended the Dogs Trust branch in Sadberge to present the check to Bethany Scrafton along with Mr Luke's dog, Elvis.

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The body also donated to Head Safe Football, a charity football-related brain disease, specifically CTE.

Mr Luke said he was inspired by the charity’s documentary on former Middlesbrough footballer Bill Gates.

The documentary was given a gala screening at TVIFF just after Mr Gates’ death, and Mr Luke has encouraged others to donate to Head Safe.